Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Holyoake, George Jacob (b. 1817), social reformer, was born ill Birmingham, where for many years he worked in an iron-foundry with his father. He afterwards adopted the social and religious views of Robert Owen (q.v.), by whose disciples he was sent to various parts of England for the purpose of disseminating his principles. In the course of his wanderings he was arrested at Cheltenham and imprisoned in Gloucester gaol on a charge of atheism (1841). After his release he came to London, and established a printing and publishing office in Fleet Street. He has been an active supporter of political and social reforms and, as editor of the Reasoner and other free-thought periodicals, has done much to promote a spirit of toleration in the discussion of public questions. Mr. Holyoake's name is especially identified with the Co-operative movement, and he took an active share in assisting Garibaldi during the Italian War of Independence.